by Linda Harper

❤️Because we do not live in a society where wooden or stone images are set up in prominent public places and openly worshipped, it is sometimes difficult for us to understand what “Praise and Worship” are all about.  In Old Testament accounts, the Israelites knew how to worship. They worshipped both the True God and, in times of sinful rebellion, turned their devotion and energies to worshipping false gods of wood, stone, gold, the heavenly bodies, etc. They may have often worshipped gods that “were no gods” but they had no problem knowing how to worship!

❤️The “man after God’s own heart”, the psalmist and minstrel, King David, knew how to worship in the way that pleased God.  He gave us some guidelines in Psalm 100.

❤️Psalm 100, A Psalm of Praise. 1. Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands. 2. Serve the Lord with gladness; come before His presence with singing. 3. Know ye that the LORD He is God; it is He that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people and the sheep of his pasture. 4. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise; be thankful unto Him, and bless his name. 4. For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations. (KJV)

 Some of the steps to be taken listed in Verse 4 are:  

  1. Enter His gates with Thanksgiving
  2. Enter His courts with Praise  
  3. Be Thankful  
  4. Bless His Name

 Further instructions are given in Psalm 150, Verse 2. as it speaks of praising God for:  

  1. His Mighty Acts  
  2. His Excellent Greatness

 Psalm 150:2 “Praise Him for his mighty acts; praise Him according to his excellent greatness.” (KJV)

❤️Did you give or receive any Valentines this February? If so, I would like for you to examine the content of each.  What greetings or salutations do you remember?  Was the word “Dear” used to express love or affection?  Was the word “Thanks” or “Thank you” used near the beginning?  Were some things to be thankful for listed?  Were attributes of character listed like: Loving, Wonderful, Great, Beautiful, etc.?   Were any good deeds mentioned such as “Helping me”, “Loving me”, “Providing for me”, “Befriending me” or “Being there when I needed you”?

❤️If you review Psalm 100 and Psalm 150:2 quoted above, you will find the same elements in them as you find in any sincere, serious Valentine Card.  What it boils down to is this; Praise and Worship are very much like sending God a Valentine in which you express thanks, praise Him for the person He is, praise and thank Him for the things He has done and lovingly “Bless” His Name with expressions of endearment.

❤️For someone to receive a Valentine it must first be sent.  You must put the recipient's name and address on the envelope, put a stamp on it (which, by the way, costs money), and then it must be delivered to the Post Office. How would the person you intend to bless with a Valentine Card know what is in your heart or in the card if you never mailed it! Praise must also be “mailed” if God is to receive the intended blessing.  

❤️The ways to praise taught in the Bible are simply ways to “mail” your Valentine to God!  Some of the ways to praise are vocal expressions, such as: speaking, proclaiming, declaring, praying, whispering, shouting, and singing. Some ways are audible, such as clapping your hands, or playing an instrument for Him. Some ways to praise are silent yet visible, such as: lifting up your hands, dancing reverently and rhythmically before Him, kneeling or falling on your face before Him in honor of His presence. All of these ways to praise, offered privately or publicly, are ways to “mail” God a Valentine. They deliver your message, the “love note” in your heart, to God.

❤️Getting back to the stamp. Yes, the stamp cost money, and so did the card!  Time and effort were put into finding just the right card, looking up the address and getting it to the Post Office.  Every Valentine represents an investment of time and energy and something of your personal essence.  So also should our “Praise and Worship Valentine” we send to God.  Even King David said he would not offer God a sacrifice that cost him nothing (2 Samuel 24:24).

❤️Just as we receive hugs and smiles in return for the Valentines we send, our Heavenly Father eagerly responds to the Praise and Worship each individual sends to Him.  He so values our Praise and Worship that He actually wraps it around Himself and lives inside it. Psalm 22:3 states that God inhabits the praises of His people. “But thou art Holy, O thou that inhabits the praises of Israel.” (Psalm 22:3)  

❤️Our God, who could live anywhere He would like in all of His creation, has chosen to live, to abide, to dwell, to rest, in the praises we, His people, send His way. Today and every day let us send Him the praises due Him!  Let us exalt His Name together!  Let us willingly offer the sacrifices of praise He so desires and deserves from us. Let us begin today to send “Valentines” His way.  Let us actively seek to become one of those worshipers He is seeking that worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.   

❤️He loves us and delights in every Valentine sent from a pure heart. He even has made provision through the blood of Jesus, to cleanse and purify the hearts of those desiring to enter His presence.  His invitation is to “Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord; though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool” (Isaiah 1:18).  Purify your hearts with the Blood of the Lamb and then boldly come to His throne where you will find mercy, grace, comfort and peace.

❤️He is waiting now. Yes, even now, He is knocking at your heart’s door.  Open your heart to Him today and let the praises begin to flow.  Out of your innermost being shall flow rivers of living water.  You too, will sing and make melody in your heart to the Lord, creating a beautiful Praise and Worship Valentine for your King! I encourage you to mail yours today.❤️

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Linda Harper © 2002 Permission granted to reproduce and distribute this Blog 



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